kafranbel-aug2011.jpgシリア緊急募金、およびそのための情報源
UNHCR (国連難民高等弁務官事務所)
WFP (国連・世界食糧計画)
MSF (国境なき医師団)
認定NPO法人 難民支援協会

……ほか、sskjzさん作成の「まとめ」も参照

お読みください:
「なぜ、イスラム教徒は、イスラム過激派のテロを非難しないのか」という問いは、なぜ「差別」なのか。(2014年12月)

「陰謀論」と、「陰謀」について。そして人が死傷させられていることへのシニシズムについて。(2014年11月)

◆知らない人に気軽に話しかけることのできる場で、知らない人から話しかけられたときに応答することをやめました。また、知らない人から話しかけられているかもしれない場所をチェックすることもやめました。あなたの主張は、私を巻き込まずに、あなたがやってください。

【お知らせ】本ブログは、はてなブックマークの「ブ コメ一覧」とやらについては、こういう経緯で非表示にしています。(こういうエントリをアップしてあってもなお「ブ コメ非表示」についてうるさいので、ちょい目立つようにしておきますが、当方のことは「揉め事」に巻き込まないでください。また、言うまでもないことですが、当方がブ コメ一覧を非表示に設定することは、あなたの言論の自由をおかすものではありません。)

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2011年01月22日

On Japanese-English translation

When the English word "lucky" sounds odd...


As a translator, one of the "problems" is how the word I chose sounds like to my client and a greater audience.

Once upon a time, I was advised by my client (actually someone I know really well) that one word should be changed. I translated a short description from Japanese to English and chose the expression "fall apart" for Japanese 「だめになる」. There was nothing wrong with my translation, according to him, except for the word "apart". He said it sounded so "cheap".

Why? In Japanese, the word アパート (apa-to) exclusively means "cheap apartment house(s)". When you have a family or earn a lot, you live in a flat/apartment called "mansion マンション" - I never know why, so don't ask. You live in an "apart (apa-to)" when you are a student or you don't earn a lot.

Nothing to do with the word "apart" in "fall apart". But as long as my client is concerned, it was a big problem. "There are not many Japanese out there," he said, "who can read the translated English text. But many can read some words. They may try to make a judgement on my project by what they read ... or even see. And when they can't tell what 'fall apart' means? Two negative 'easy' words, 'fall' and 'apart', are enough to make my project look bad!"

I did my best to convince him that the word 'apart' was not 'negative' at all. In vain. So I just agreed to remove the word 'apart'. "There isn't much to lose when you change 'the plan fell apart' to 'the plan fell', innit?" he smiled. I still thought "fell apart" sounded better, but just smiled back.

Sounds odd? But it's quite familier to us J-E/E-J translators: most Japanese know many English words, have their own "images" about them, and do not (can not) read the English text!

Well, to tell the truth, I changed almost all the details of this anecdote before I publish it. I must not disclose who my client is and which case I was talking about has to remain vague. I'm no Julian Assange. But I swear I haven't changed the fundamental part. There are cases of English words that don't feel quite right because in Japan we use the (borrowed) English words in a totally different context. A close example is "honcho" in English - today, the word 班長 in Japanese sounds too boy-scoutish.

Why I'm writing this. I was told of some reactions to the English words "lucky/unlucky".



Well the cliche/set-phrase "the unluckiest/luckiest man in the world" is not solely to blame, but I'm sure it played a part, however small. We simply don't have that kind of "joke". If someone's unlucky, he should be pitied upon: it's too rude to make fun of him in any way. Or I should write "in ANY way".

On the other hand, "lucky" - as a "borrowed" word, in the form of ラッキー - can sound like "you didn't do anything but still you get something valuable, you cheat!" When in Japanese (in kanji), it is somewhat ... well it's like "you lucky lazy one!"

So in Japan, the "lucky/unlucky" cliche would fail to hit the right note, unfortunately, in many cases.

Anyway I'm amazed to see the fierce over-reaction from Japanese people. I read the "first" blog that pointed out the "problem". It was written by a "50 something graduate student, who has been in the UK for three years" according his profile.

Does he know the "wrong kind of snow" joke and Potters Bar tragedy? No, it doesn't sound like so, from what he blogged.

He wrote something like this:
"I was watching the BBC's QI, a very popular comedy programme, on 18 December. I was apalled that they took Mr Tsutomu Yamaguchi, who was a double hibakusha, on the table to make fun of him!"

I didn't find Stephen Fry and the quiz panel "made fun of" Mr Yamaguchi. Nor did my friends on twitter who can speak/read/comprehend/whatsoever English.

What is pathetic is, as far as I know, all the mainstream media (newspaper) failed dearly on this matter: it looks like they have no more clue on Potters Bar than the "first" blogger does. How can this be? It was all too clear, too obvious, and too apparent that they were laughing at the British rail system and admired Japanese one that worked all right on the next day of the Atomic bombing.

I personally found some of the jokes, such as "the radio active water" and "the wrong/right kind of bomb", really vulgar, bad-taste, crude, epic-fail etc, but it doesn't change the fact that they were laughing at the British rail system.

Or maybe just a little bit of Maggie Thatcher or John Major at the end might have helped. But who (in the UK) cares?



Oh I was so pre-occupied that I forgot this!

http://www.isthatcherdeadyet.co.uk/

※この記事は

2011年01月22日

にアップロードしました。
1年も経ったころには、書いた本人の記憶から消えているかもしれません。


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【2003年に翻訳した文章】The Nuclear Love Affair 核との火遊び
2003年8月14日、John Pilger|ジョン・ピルジャー

私が初めて広島を訪れたのは,原爆投下の22年後のことだった。街はすっかり再建され,ガラス張りの建築物や環状道路が作られていたが,爪痕を見つけることは難しくはなかった。爆弾が炸裂した地点から1マイルも離れていない河原では,泥の中に掘っ立て小屋が建てられ,生気のない人の影がごみの山をあさっていた。現在,こんな日本の姿を想像できる人はほとんどいないだろう。

彼らは生き残った人々だった。ほとんどが病気で貧しく職もなく,社会から追放されていた。「原子病」の恐怖はとても大きかったので,人々は名前を変え,多くは住居を変えた。病人たちは混雑した国立病院で治療を受けた。米国人が作って経営する近代的な原爆病院が松の木に囲まれ市街地を見下ろす場所にあったが,そこではわずかな患者を「研究」目的で受け入れるだけだった。

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